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Travelling To Turkey, Military Service Question?

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Hi there.

My Father is a Turkish born Turk. How ever he migrated to Australia 30+ years ago.

He holds both a Australian Citizenship & Turkish. ( Dual National )Coming to Australia at such a young age, he never returned to Turkey & therfore never did the Military service.

He is now 51 years of age wanting to travel to Turkey as a tourist.

He will be travelling on his Australian passport. I know the cut off age for Military in Turkey is 41 from what I have heard.

Will he have any trouble travelling to Turkey?

ThanksEran

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I certainly think you should look into this properly - it would be nice to say that there should be no problem, but by law your father could be considered a 'draft evader'www.unhcr.org/refworld/pdfid/467010bd2.pdf "As regards evasion of military service, Turkish law distinguishes between evasion ofregistration/examination, evasion of enlistment and desertion. The first two offences carry prisonsentences of up to three years, which are often commuted to a fine."see particularly page 40 and the summary at the endHe may need to renounce his Turkish citizenship to be certain that he won't have any trouble. To some people this might not feel right, as they're proud of their heritage, but from a practical angle, it may be the safest course of action. Even travelling on his Australian passport, he may come up on their system.

Are you sure his Turkish citizenship is still live? It says in the document above that having failed to show for his enlistment, his nationality may have been revoked in his absence - which would actually be a good thing for him, as he wouldn't be further punished.

Maybe a call to the Australian Turkish consulate may be wise?

Tough situation, but you wouldn't want to take the chance.

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Hi Eran,I am from Oz too. The best advice is to contact the consulate as details of your father's situation is unknown ( has he ever postponed his military service? if yes how did he do it ( student, working here ))You dont have to give names, just talk to the consulate and ask information. They are really helpful.

Some may advise you that it would be alright as your father will be using Australian Passport, but dont take any chances. If consulate advises you that there would be no problems, and you are willing to provide your details, get something in writing. ( i always take my extension of military service letter with me, everytime i visit turkey just incase)Hope this helps...cheersPostal address:66 Ocean Street,P.

O.

Box.222Woollahra NSW 2025 AustraliaTelephone:+ 61 2 9302 4600Fax:+ 61 2 9362 4533e-Mail: [email protected] Hours:Monday - Friday09:00 -13:00 14:00 -16:00

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Welcome to our forum Eran and a good question. Turk has provided information which I am sure will help you, but like he said don't take any chances and get everything in writing.

I hope that you will update us on how it all works out as I'm sure that it will be helpful for others.

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I too am from Australia, and am in a similar situation to your dad in that we migrated to Australia when I was a child of 8. I am now 48. I too have dual citizenship, and even tried to renounce my citizenship (work reasons) but was knocked back (renouncement not approved) because in their opinion they felt I was attempting to evade national service.

I dare not visit Turkey, even with my Aussie passport, because of the following;

1) I have had numerous verbal reports from relatives in Turkey that the Jandarma had been asking for me,

2) I called my "ş

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Hi Nescient1 welcome to our forum. Thank you very much for your input, you have obviously done alot of research and will give Eran and others who find themselves in this situation a clearer picture.

I do hope that you are successful as it must be a worry that you are unable to visit your parents now that they are elderly.

Good luck, I hope that you will let us know the outcome. :hysterical[1]: :hysterical[1]:

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Thanks for the information Nescient - I will start looking for a more up to date document. As you may know, it's hard to get full information about army service in English.

Just a question - would it make sense in your situation to pay yourself out of your service? I know that even when you pay, you're supposed to do 21 days, but perhaps it could make the difference between being given a fine and a custodial punishment? And at least if you got picked up, it would just be a few weeks?

I hope you both find some sort of solution.

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Welcome to our forum Eran and a good question. Turk has provided information which I am sure will help you, but like he said don't take any chances and get everything in writing.

Thanks for the welcome.

Yes agree about getting things in writing, though unlike Aus bureaucracy, getting things in writing from the relevant Turkish authorities, that would hold weight, is challenging. Especially for folks like myself whose Turkish is very rusty.

I hope that you will update us on how it all works out as I'm sure that it will be helpful for others.

Thanks again. Honestly, I'm not confident that my case has any future. Unless the government changes the law pertaining to expats with NS obligations.
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Thanks for the information Nescient - I will start looking for a more up to date document. As you may know, it's hard to get full information about army service in English.

Yes it is very difficult. Not only are some consulates losing touch with their poor Turkish speaking (or non-Turkish speaking) expats, but relevant departments in Turkey are not much help with the English, if they respond at all. For example, I had emailed the Turkish defence force for clarification on some points, but never got a reply. And though once upon a time, earlier in my life, my Turkish was fluent (I was even doing some part-time interpreting work for a legal firm when I was a postgrad) I now have trouble keeping up with what Turkish clerks are saying. For example, the admin staff in the ş
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  • 2 weeks later...

I know it's a shot in the dark, but how about a letter to the PM or President explaining the situation to see what they suggest?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi allAgain I am in the same predicament. My parents came to Australia when I was 18 months old. My father in my 20's and 30's kept extending my military service as I was studying from my undergraduate, then masters etc. I actually travelled on a Turkish passport in 2000 but since getting my citizenship in 2000, I have let my Turkish passport lapse and not extended or do anything else with my military service.

I do not have dual citizenship but ringing the Turkish embassy in Australia, they confirmed I will always have Turkish citizenship as I was born in Turkey. I also assume as my father did all my paperwork prior to becoming an Australia citizen that my details are well and truly established in turkey.

I have no intention of ever residing in Turkey as I am married to an Australian and live in Australia however like so many others I wish to visit relatives in Turkey. To my knowledge and as mentioned before I was advised not to travel to Turkey as my name will be listed and even as a Australian national I will be forced to do military service but after reading all the comments from nescient1, I would also seem to in line for some criminal action.

I do not know why, I was not brought up in the country and whilst I too am proud of my heritage I am not very happy about people in my situation that were children when leaving the country and yet are still viewed as draft dodgers. In all honesty I have gotten very little help from the Australian embassy who were I suppose purposefully vague. The only concrete information given was the amount to pay for you service. I appreciate nescient1 comments as it seems to be the only real information regarding this. I do want to visit the country I was born in and show my wife and child the beauties of Turkey which all my non Turkish friends have done except me.

The amount of money the government wants is high but the time is the precious commodity. I am the sole bread winner and cannot afford 3 weeks let alone all the other time necessary to make this commitment.

I think this is very unfair for those under a certain age that immigrated to another country. I think these laws are somewhat draconian and need to be reviewed in line with what is fair and reasonable.

I have tried with the Turkish embassy and they have sent me an email and said no option but to pay and do the time.

Seems like nothing else to do but visit everywhere else except the country I want to visit the most.

Eddie

I know it's a shot in the dark, but how about a letter to the PM or President explaining the situation to see what they suggest?

Sounds good but would they even bother to read it!
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  • 1 month later...

Welcome to our forum Eddie and thanks for posting. I do agree it does seem unfair but hopefully there will be changes made in the near future.

Just thought I would share my experiences and hope some others will too as this matter is purposefully vague and all information is useful.

I have a Turkish father and English mother. I was born in Istanbul for whatever reason and we moved to the UK when I was a baby. I am currently 33 and have very little Turkish language skills (pretty much none).

The Military Service was always at the back of my mind as a teenager onwards so avoided travel to Turkey or doing anything about it until last year - when I really wanted to visit some relatives. I went to the Turkish consulate in London and was lucky enough to be dealt with by a pretty friendly guy. I paid about

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  • 2 months later...

Hi Eddie,I don't know how often you check this site but hopefully you do often and I hope this will help you out. Maybe at the very least it will help someone out. I'm going to tell you exactly how to keep your citizenship without doing anything illegal or immoral and without doing your military service. If you or anyone else would like to know just post something so I know people still read this thread.

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Hi Arif, Welcome to the forum :lol: . I'm sure you'll find the members here very helpful.

I agree with Sue. Don't know if the original poster (Eddie) is still around, but there are many others reading this forum who would be just as interested in what you might know about this topic, and if it's not illegal or immoral, then why not post your information to share ? Hope to hear from you soon ! :)

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Why the cloak and dagger?if you have some useful information for people, why not just post it.

It will get read.

Bravo! And another option is: Do your time when you are young and serve your great country. One cannot be halfaturk [new word] and be in Turkey.
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Why the cloak and dagger?if you have some useful information for people, why not just post it.

It will get read.

My apologies to everyone, it was late and I was leaving on a business trip the following day, it's nice to see people are on this forum. Apparently, it may have been too late, upon re-reading everything I fear I may may mis-wrote. At this point, however, I'll share what I know, perhaps it's old news for many of you. First, a little background. I was born in The States and have always lived here--I believe this may set me apart from everyone else-being born outside Turkey. Although I was born to Turkish parents who registered with the Turkish government--I automatically got Turkish citizenship. As a citizen I'm required to do my military service. When I was old enough to serve I kept extending it, first with school then by working. I had until age 38 to complete it. I never did. I happen to be at the Turkish Consulate in Chicago taking care of some unrelated matters when the subject of the military came up. Now, mind you, I've been in contact with these people for over 20years. They knew me, my parents, my situation etc. Can you possibly imagine my shock when they told me that all I had to do was get a Mavi Kart(blue card)and I would be exempt from doing military service but have citizenship!! The one caveat with the card is that you don't have the right to vote. Of course it was too late for me because you need to get it before age 38. The funny thing is, here in Amereica we have a Turkish/American Society where there were many of us in similar situations and not 1 has ever heard of it.

I don't know all in ins and outs of the card. I do know there is also a blue card that has to do with automoble registration---that's not the one. I will provide a link at the bottom to some Questions and Answers from the E-Consolate. I don't know if it applies to those born in Turkey. I hope this is some use to someone, I can only imagine how valuable that information would have been to me at age 37. http://www.konsolosluk.gov.tr/QuestionBank/QB_MainPage.aspxI just tried the link and it doesn't quite work-- here's how to fix it:Where it says keyword type in: "mavi kart"You can pull down "citizenship" in the second boxPull down Turkish as the language---nothing will appear under English

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Thanks Arif02 for explaining, this is a well looked at thread so you can be sure that even if no one answers they will be reading it.

For those people who act on Arif's post it would be nice to hear if it promted you to seek this Blue Card and how it worked out.

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Well I don't know if Arif has ever been to Turkey, or if he ever got a full kimlik. To get a Mavi Kart you actually have to withdraw from Turkish citizenship -- this is what my daughter had to do 4 years ago in order to sit for the YÖS exam (uni entrance exam designed for foreign students -- cannot sit this exam if you are a citizen of Turkey or Northern Cyprus). She got a Mavi Kart, which looks like a kimlik (and with the same kimlik number), which entitled her to live in Turkey indefinitely as a citizen, but with the proviso she couldn't vote, work for the govt or stand for office (and presumably not be able to serve in the military) but still entitled to medical services etc, and was able to travel in & out of Turkey using her foreign passport + Mavi Kart. I know of one male student who did the same. I believe the govt looks very closely into the reasons why a person wants to opt out of citizenship, and in the case of a male, I imagine they'd make sure there was no ulterior motive like wanting to get out of military service. It may be available to people born in Turkey but they'd have to be dual citizens, as the govt would deny their request if it would leave them "stateless".

All the same, it's useful to know these things -- thanks Arif ! :confused1[1]:

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  • 1 month later...

Hi, I have a similar type of problem.

I was born in the United Kingdom so I automatically get a British citizenship, however I have a Turkish Citizenship through my mum, a Turkish Cypriot Citizenship automatically through my dad.. I don't know too much as to how the laws work regarding military service and the consulate don't care to explain properly, I recently declared my dual nationality as they would not extend my military service without it, after waiting around 5-6 months for that to go through I did not get anything back from them to say it had been done so I emailed and they said it had... so I went to extend my military service till 38 its been 2 months now and I haven't heard anything again .. am I supposed to receive a document which I use to enter and leave Turkey without getting arrested for evasion of military service! The workers at the consulate in London aren't too helpful... and I don't fancy ringing Turkey to ask them cause I don't know where to start they get confused when I try to tell them I have 3 citizenships lol. Thanks in advance

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I believe you have to get the paper from the Consulate to prove you have an exemption until age 38, and you should always have it with you when entering/leaving Turkey (to save hassle at security). One thing I do know is that the wheels of progress grind very slowly when it comes to issuing paperwork from Turkey ! :animatedwink[1]:

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